Tag Archive: Financial

Financial and Succession Planning Workshop – January 26

January 26, 2017

10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (lunch provided)

Jackson County Extension
2741 Penn Avenue, Marianna, Florida 32448

Join us for a Financial and Succession Planning Workshop!

Strategic Wealth Group from Tallahassee will be leading the workshop. They have an expertise in business and estate planning and specialize in working with farmers.The program will address some key questions:

  • Are you operating under the most efficient form of ownership (LLC, S-Corp, Partnership, Sole Proprietorship)?

  • Are you planning an ownership transition to the next generation in the future?

  • Do you have a buy/sell agreement to protect your business and family? If so, does the agreement accomplish exactly what you want?

  • Do you have key employees and are you worried they may leave you?

  • Have you taken steps to protect your assets from liability arising from farm or personal accidents?

  • Are you paying more taxes than you have to? 

Workshop Flyer:  NWFL Financial and Succession Planning Workshop Flyer


Make plans to attend, and please RSVP to 800.527.0647 by January 20, 2017



Author: admin – webmaster@ifas.ufl.edu


Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/01/14/financial-and-succession-planning-workshop-january-26/

De-Clutter Your Financial Life

De-Clutter Your Financial Life

Photo credit: pixabay.com

Photo credit: pixabay.com

In spring cleaning mode? If so, now is the perfect time to de-clutter your financial life. Organizing important papers as well as purging unnecessary ones will reduce paper clutter and stress and help you to locate what you need when you need it. Let’s get started!

Store home files as follows:

  • Current files – day-to-day records. These include bank account information, bills and receipts, loan agreements, and certain medical information. For a list of suggested categories, check out Financial Recordkeeping: Organizing Your Financial Life.
  • Permanent files – on-going records used infrequently, such as employment and education records and health benefit information.
  • Dead storage – anything you feel uncomfortable discarding, such as old tax records or real estate you’ve sold. These can be stored in less accessible drawers or boxes.

Discard the following monthly: Credit card, grocery, ATM, and debit card receipts after they appear on the statement unless they are needed for taxes, business, or proof of purchase.

Keep these items for one year:

  • Paycheck stubs – save until you compare with your W-2 and Social Security earnings statements then shred.
  • Canceled checks and bank statements – shred unless needed for tax purposes or can be retrieved online.
  • Quarterly investment statements – double-check with year-end statements then shred.

How Long to Keep Tax Records
The IRS recommends 3-6 years for income tax records, worksheets, and documentation of deductions. Keep records for as long as needed for administration of the IRS code. Tax records often are useful in situations where financial history is relevant.

Do Not Toss:

  • Birth and death certificates, adoption decrees
  • Marriage licenses and divorce decrees
  • Social Security cards
  • Military discharge papers, including spouse, even if deceased
  • Immigration documents
  • Pension plan information from current and former employers
  • Estate planning documents
  • Life insurance policies
  • Titles for property still owned

De-clutter a section at a time – if the task seems overwhelming, work at it 15 minutes a day until you’re finished. Then, enjoy less stress with organized files!

Adapted from De-Clutter Your Financial Life, Julie England, UF/IFAS Extension Lake County, and Lisa Leslie, UF/IFAS Extension Hillsborough County, 02/16.



Author: Judy Corbus – jlcorbus@ufl.edu

Judy Corbus is the Family and Consumer Sciences Agent in Washington and Holmes Counties.

Judy Corbus

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2016/03/15/de-clutter-your-financial-life/

AgSave$ Workshop Series: Securing Your Farm’s Financial Future

AgSave$   Workshop Series:  Securing Your Farm’s Financial Future

The Barton Family.  Photo by Shepard Eubanks, UF/IFAS

Ken Barton is working to pass the family farming heritage on from generation to generation. Photo by Shepard Eubanks, UF/IFAS

On February 23, 2015, 93 folks in the Agriculture Industry assembled to kick-off a new initiative, AgSave$ , to bring personal finance education such as estate planning, succession planning, and protecting assets, to farmers, ranchers and agriculture producers in Florida.  The AgSave$ program is a cooperative effort between Agriculture and Family and Consumer Sciences Faculty in the University of Florida IFAS Extension Northwest District.  This program is being sponsored by Farm Credit of Northwest Florida and Consumer Federation of America and America Saves made possible by Bank of America Charitable Foundation.

County Extension Offices across the Panhandle will offer a  four-session workshop series designed to help farm families work through challenging financial topics that were introduced at the Ag Save$ Summit that include:

  • Preparing for Retirement and Other Goals
  • How to manage and reduce your debt
  • Securing your Family’s and Your Farm’s Future through Succession Planning

Each family registered will receive a Farm Journal Legacy Workbook and portfolio to organize important financial documents.  These workshops will be offered in each county extension office in Northwest Florida.


The dates and topics for the series of workshop series are:

  1. March 24 – Preparing for Retirement and Other Goals

  2. June 23 – Trimming the fat, how to manage and reduce your debt

  3. July 21 – Securing your Family’s and Your Farm’s Future Part 1

  4. August 18 – Securing your Family’s and Your Farm’s Future Part 2

Download the flyer for more information:  AgSave$ Workshop Series Flyer


Preregistration is required by March 17.  You can register online at:


or by contacting your local extension office



Author: Jennifer Bearden – bearden@ufl.edu

Agriculture Agent Okaloosa County

Jennifer Bearden

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2015/02/28/agsave-workshop-series-securing-your-farms-financial-future/

UF/IFAS Extension to Help Farm Families Secure their Financial Future

The Barton Family.  Photo by Shepard Eubanks, UF/IFAS

The Barton Family. Photo by Shepard Eubanks, UF/IFAS

Kimberly Moore Wilmoth, UF/IFAS Communications Services & Michael Gutter, UF/IFAS Finical Management Specialist

For Bonifay farmer and rancher Ken Barton, business and family is more than just a balancing act – it is his livelihood.

Barton is 10 years away from retirement, and concerned about how he will hand over the reins of the family business he established in 1979 to his son and son-in-law.

“I think one of the things that kind of sticks out in my mind – what will I need to do to make sure that when I’m ready to retire – or simply have a smaller share and smaller responsibility – how do I leave that to my children without a huge tax burden on them or me?” Barton asked recently. He owns 260 acres and leases another 1,500 to grow row crops and raise cattle. “That’s my concern  ─ that we can transfer that farm and those assets to the next generation without hidden things – things that we’re not aware of that could cause us the most problems.”

Many Florida farming and ranching families face that same question, and that’s where the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences’ Extension program, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and the Florida Department of Financial Services, are stepping up with a new take on the 6-year-old Florida Saves program. It’s called Agriculture Saves ─  or AgSave$ ─ and it is designed to help farmers and ranchers make that transition from one generation to the next.

It is so important that Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater and state agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam are issuing a proclamation on Feb. 5, declaring February 23 – 28, 2015, as Florida Saves week.

“Whereas, 80 percent of surveyed farmers plan to transfer their operation to the next generation, but only 20 percent feel confident their succession plan will achieve that goal,” the proclamation reads.  The Florida cabinet is set that morning to sign the proclamation, which also encourages military families to save money.

“Personal and household savings are fundamental to financial stability, yet it is estimated that 50 percent of Americans currently live paycheck-to-paycheck,” said CFO Atwater. “By sponsoring this resolution, we can help to ensure that Florida has a more secure economic future through education efforts and by encouraging smart, responsible financial decisions.”

On Feb. 23 in Marianna, Jay, and Monticello, Northwest Florida Extension offices will host a Summit with presentations designed to help farmers and ranchers plan for their futures.

“Building wealth in general is an important part of people securing their longtime financial futures,” said Michael Gutter, a family financial management state specialist and interim program leader in the Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences. “In fact, most business owners, especially farmers, are tying up a lot of their income, a lot of their wealth, in that family business.  So it’s important to diversify and make sure that they have other sources of revenue available to them for later on in life, as well as being able to reach some of their goals ─ including sending their children to college to learn even better ways to run the family business.”

Some questions ranching and farming families should ask include:

  • Are you interested in participating in the family operation? How?
  • Are you prepared to assume that responsibility? If no, what would it take to prepare?
  • Should family members, not active in the operation, attain or retain an ownership interest? If no, how should family assets be distributed?
  • If you want to be included in the operation, are you willing to invest in an ownership interest?
  • What is your biggest question, or unanswered concern, regarding succession intentions?
  • Are there any other succession-related topics you would like to add to the agenda for an upcoming meeting?

Ag Saves logoAnyone in the agriculture industry can attend the Extension’s AgSave$ Summit in Marianna and Jay, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. CST and Monticello, 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. EST.  Lunch will be provided thanks to Farm Credit of Northwest Florida.   This session will  focus on retirement and succession planning.

To register online: bit.ly/AgSavesSummit

A more in-depth, four session course will be follow and be held on Tuesday evenings:  March 24, June 23, July 21 and August 18, at Panhandle Extension Offices. The Ag Save$ Course registration is $ 55 per family and each family will receive the Farm Journal Legacy Project Workbook.



Author: admin – webmaster@ifas.ufl.edu


Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2015/02/07/ufifas-extension-to-help-farm-families-secure-their-financial-future/

AgSave$ Summit: Securing Your Farm’s Financial Future February 23

UF IFAS Ext 2013Ag Saves logoAg Save$ is a new initiative to provide personal financial education for farmers and ranchers in Florida.   We would like to personally invite you and your family to the 2015 AgSave$ Summit.  This kickoff event for the new AgSave$ initiative aims to help farm families address important financial issues, such as estate planning, succession planning, and protecting farm and personal assets. Ag Save$ is being delivered to you by the Panhandle Agricultural and Family and Consumer Sciences Faculty of University of Florida IFAS Extension.

AgSave$ Summit

February 23, 2015

Registration and Conversation: 8:30 am (Central) 9:30 am (Eastern)

Program 9:00 am – 1:00 pm (Central); 10:00 am – 2:00 pm (Eastern)

Ag Save$ Summit Agenda (Central Time)

  • 9:00 am  Overview of Ag Save$

  • 9:15  – Ag Save$ Proclamation – Adam Putnam, Florida Commissioner of Agriculture

  • 9:30 – Preparing for the Future of Agriculture in Florida – Dr. Nick Place, UF/IFAS Dean of Extension

  • 9:45 – Preparing and Planning for the Next Generation of Successful Farmers – Dr. Michael Gutter, UF/IFAS Financial Specialist

  • 10:15 – Farm Management and Succession Planning – Trey Usry, Florida Farm Bureau Federation

  • 11:15 – Sponsored Lunch

  • 11:45 A Financial Check-up for Your Farm – Dr. Michael Gutter, UF/IFAS Financial Specialist

  • 12:45 Questions, Discussion, and Next Steps


Join UF/IFAS Extension Faculty and Adam Putnam for the AgSave$ Summit!  Lunch is provided with help from sponsors, so bring your family and be our guest at this special event.


To be held simultaneously in 3 Locations

Jackson County Extension Office

(host site)

2741 Pennsylvania Avenue

Marianna, FL 32448


Doug Mayo: demayo@ufl.edu

Jay Community Center Extension Office

(satellite location)

5259 Booker Lane

Jay, FL 32566

850- 623-3868

Blake Thaxton: bthaxton@ufl.edu

Jefferson County Extension Office

(satellite location)

2729 W. Washington Hwy

 Monticello, FL  32344

850- 342-0187

Jed Dillard: dillardjed@ufl.edu


Please RSVP by February 19th through Eventbrite: bit.ly/AgSavesSummit or by contacting the site coordinator at the location where you choose to attend.

Download the printer friendly flyer:  Ag Saves Summit 2015 Flyer

AgSave$ is sponsored by:

AgSave$   Sponsor


Author: Jennifer Bearden – bearden@ufl.edu

Agriculture Agent Okaloosa County

Jennifer Bearden

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2015/01/24/agsave-summit-securing-your-farms-financial-future-february-23/

Florida Agriculture Financial Management Conference – October 21-22

FL AG Financial Mgmt Conf graphic

The 2013 Florida Agricultural Financial Management Conference (FAFMC) is taking place on October 21 – 22, 2013 at the Omni Orlando Resort at Champions Gate. This year we’re pleased to announce our partnership with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to bring this conference to the state. With a projected attendance of 300 people, we’re soaring to new heights to offer the best in programming, speakers and networking. Thanks to our generous sponsors, we’re able to offer registration at an affordable price combined with low guest room rates at one of central Florida’s top-rated golf and recreational resorts.

Purpose of the Conference

The purpose of this program is to provide essential financial risk management seminars for Florida’s agricultural producers. As Florida’s economy depends on the $ 130 Billion agriculture industry, it is critical that producers have strong financial management skills to proactively manage risks to remain competitive and viable.

Highlights of the Conference:

  • Succession Planning to the next Generation
  • Finance for the Non-finance Manager
  • Agriculture Economic Forecast
  • Leveraging Emerging Media:  Beyond Branding
  • Agriculture Tax Strategies

Why Should You Attend?

  • Learn strategic financial business solutions
  • Network with your colleagues
  • Share ideas
  • CPE and CLE education
  • Meet with financial-related business partners
  • Understand how your daily decisions impact the company profitability
  • Discuss the current financial market and its impact on agribusiness

Who Should Attend?

  • Ag Business
    • Owner/Producer
    • Accountant/Bookkeeper
    • CFO and Controller
  • Attorneys with interest in agriculture law practice
  • CPAs and Accountants
To register or get more information go to the Conference Website (Discounted, early registration ends October 7)

Author: Doug Mayo – demayo@ufl.edu

Jackson County Extension Director, & Livestock & Forages Agent

My true expertise is with beef cattle and pasture management, but I can assist with information on other livestock species, as well as recreational fish ponds.

Doug Mayo

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2013/09/27/florida-agriculture-financial-management-conference-october-21-22/

Begin the Journey Path to “Financial Wellness” Today!

Are you feeling the stress of rapidly increasing gas and food prices?  Today is a good day to begin changing your financial situation! Start by learning about important money matters and taking steps to improve your money skills.

These five steps will help you on your path to “financial wellness.”

  1. Make a commitment.  Changing your relationship with money is not easy—it takes hard work and commitment.  Set a financial goal, commit to it, and become an American Saver at http://americasaves.org .  Also, visit http://financialliteracymonth.com for more resources.
  2. Assess your financial situation.  Don’t hide your head in the sand.  Truly look at your financial situation by completing a net worth statement.  Your net worth is the value of all of your assets minus the total of all of your liabilities. Put another way, it is what you own minus what you owe. Knowing where you are today will help you determine the best path toward meeting your financial goals.  For a net worth worksheet:   http://bit.ly/hjfnQP
  3. Get Organized.  Getting your financial house organized is a great way to begin on a clear path toward financial wellness.  Visit Organize Your Financial Life or your local Extension office to receive a free copy of the “Money Management Calendar.”
  4. Set priorities.  Understanding the difference between needs and wants will help you establish financial priorities and set realistic goals.
  5. Live on a Spending/Savings Plan (a.k.a.—“budget”). Spending less than you earn is easier said than done!  A solid plan is the most important element for financial success.

Changing money management habits and your relationship with money can be hard work, but the payoff is priceless.  Remember:  stay flexible on your financial journey, revisit your plan, and make needed changes.  Additional resources

Author: Elaine A. Courtney


Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2012/05/09/begin-the-journey-path-to-financial-wellness-today/

Financial Literacy and Retirement Readiness

 Kristin Jackson
Family and Consumer Sciences/4-H Agent
Jefferson County

Financial Literacy is having the knowledge you need to make wise financial decisions. Recent research has found that financial literacy is related to retirement savings and retirement readiness.  As America shifts from pension plans seen in the 1980s to defined contribution plans (ex. personal accounts or 401(k)s), financial literacy is becoming more important.  Today, most people must successfully set aside the amount of money needed for retirement with little to no help from their employers.  Hence, it is easy to get off track and wait too long to start saving for retirement.
Check with your employer to see if they offer retirement planning assistance. Photo Credits: Kristin Jackson, Jefferson County

Individuals who do not plan for retirement retire with 50% less wealth than those who do plan for retirement. In order to plan for retirement successfully, you must calculate and save the amount of money needed to maintain your lifestyle after you stop working.  As a rule of thumb, the amount of money received from Social Security is not enough to live comfortably during retirement.  The average monthly payment for a retired worker is $ 1,178.10 a month or $ 14,137.20 annually.  However, not all retirees receive the amount above; some people receive less money.  For this reason, it is necessary to plan ahead.

Some questions you can ask yourself to determine if you are prepared for retirement are:
1.Will I be debt-free?
2.What will my living expenses look like after I retire?
3.Will I receive a pension?
4.How much will I get from Social Security?
5.How much savings will I need?
6.Is my portfolio diversified?
A reputable financial planner can help find answers to the questions above and alert you to other things of which you should be aware.

Sources for locating a financial advisor include:
•Your employer’s Human Resources Department
•The Financial Planning Association, 1-800-647-6340, www.fpanet.org
•National Association of Personal Financial Advisors,1-800-366-2732, www.napfa.org
•Society of Financial Service Professionals, 1-888-243-2258, www.financialpro.org
For more in-depth articles on specific retirement preparedness topics, visit the University of Florida’s IFAS Extension EDIS site, http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/topic_retirement.  As Dr. Michael Gutter, University of Florida Family, Youth, and Community Sciences Department, emphasizes when discussing savings, “some is better than none.”  So stop waiting and start saving today!


Jump$ tart.  (2011). Jump$ tart Coalition Frequently Asked Questions. Retrieved 5 April 2011 from http://www.jumpstart.org/faq.html

Rooij, Maarten van, Lusardi, Annamaria and Alessie, Rob, (2009), Financial Literacy and Retirement Planning in the Netherlands, DNB Working Papers, Netherlands Central Bank, Research, Department, http://econpapers.repec.org/RePEc:dnb:dnbwpp:231

Social Security Administration.  (2011). Monthly Statistical Snapshot, February 2011. Retrieved 5 April 2011 from http://www.ssa.gov/policy/docs/quickfacts/stat_snapshot/

Are you ready to retire? (2008). ConsumerReports.org. Retrieved 5 April 2011 from http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/money/retirement-planning/retirement-readiness-quiz/overview/retirement-readiness-quiz.htm

Living Well in the Panhandle

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2012/02/03/financial-literacy-and-retirement-readiness/

New Financial Program Helps Struggling Families

Kendra Zamojski
Family and Consumer Sciences Agent
Walton County

University of Florida IFAS Extension is launching the Florida Master Money Mentor Program, a new statewide program to help Floridians get free one-on-one help with their finances.  Funded in part by Bank of America, the goal of the program is to increase financial knowledge and to promote positive financial behaviors.

Volunteers complete an intensive Master Money Mentor training course.  The volunteers are then matched with people in their local communities.  Money Mentors help individuals track spending, create spending and savings plans, understand credit, and plan for the future.  “We’re not calling this the Master Budgeteer Program, but that’s really kind of what we’re doing,” says Dr. Michael Gutter, UF/IFAS Assistant Professor and Family Financial Management Specialist. “We’re thrilled about being able to do this, because so many families need this help.”

Currently, more than 150 volunteers located in approximately 20 counties throughout Florida are helping more than 170 people increase savings and reduce debt.  In the Northwest District, counties with Master Money Mentors include: Bay, Holmes, Okaloosa, Walton, and Washington.

The program targets low- to moderate-income families — especially those behind in mortgage payments or struggling to get beyond living paycheck-to-paycheck.  According to Dr. Gutter, the Master Money Mentor program gives families a one-on-one adviser who will go beyond just doling out conceptual advice.  Volunteer mentors must make a long-term commitment to the families they help.  Mentors will not give investment advice but steer families to information that will help guide them.

While every family’s financial picture will be different, Dr. Gutter says he expects Money Mentors to help in three important areas: assisting families as they make spending and savings plans, helping them analyze their credit behavior and limit debt, and pushing families to be proactive with lenders when problems arise.  “Getting a sense of control is critical for families who don’t have a lot of money,” Gutter explains.  “The harder today is, the more important it is to know tomorrow is going to be better.”

For more information, contact your local UF/IFAS Extension Office.

Living Well in the Panhandle

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2012/02/02/new-financial-program-helps-struggling-families/